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Kurt Kragthorpe and Kyle Goon
Kurt Kragthorpe and Kyle Goon cover University of Utah sports teams for The Salt Lake Tribune.

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Pac-12: Stage set for Stanford-UCLA rematch

Nearly every forecast of the Pac-12 football season called for a rematch of a November contest in the conference championship game.

It’s just that everybody thought it would be Oregon vs. USC, not Stanford vs. UCLA.

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That’s exactly what will happen, if Stanford beats the Bruins on the road Saturday. The teams would meet again Nov. 30 at Stanford with a Rose Bowl berth at stake.

That’s the fallout of Saturday’s upsets, UCLA’s 38-28 win over USC and Stanford’s 17-14 overtime defeat of Oregon.

The effect in the AP Top 25 is illustrated in this week’s rankings: Oregon No. 5, Stanford No. 11, UCLA No. 15 and Oregon State No. 16. USC fell out of the rankings.

UCLA has clinched the Pac-12 South title; Stanford needs another victory to claim the North crown, assuming Oregon wins at Oregon State. In that case, the Cardinal would host the championship game, based on a better conference record than UCLA.

If Oregon wins and Stanford loses, the Ducks would host UCLA. But if there’s a three-way tie for the North title (involving OSU), Stanford would advance to the title game – at UCLA, because that would mean the Bruins beat Stanford in the regular season.

Got all that?

The bottom line is that everything is in place for the strangest possible scenario in the Pac-12 title game: a rematch six days later, with Oregon and USC nowhere to be found.

The situation brings UCLA’s motivation for Saturday’s game into some degree of question, although the Bruins know that a sequence of events could enable them to host the title game.

Meanwhile, Arizona State (6-5) became the Pac-12’s eighth bowl-eligible team with a rout of Washington State. Utah (4-7) is not mathematically eliminated, even after its 34-24 loss to Arizona, because of a new provision that allows bowls to select 5-7 teams if absolutely necessary. But besides beating Colorado on Friday, the Utes would need a bunch of five-win teams to lose next weekend.</

PAC-12 Links
Links from around the Pac-12
Arizona (Tucson Citizen)
» Video collection: NBA decision day at McKale
» Greg Hansen's Video Notebook...why Rondae Hollis-Jefferson could be a top 10 draft pick next year
» Why Arizona's Kaleb Tarczewski and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson decided to stay
» Arizona Wildcats Video Extra...Gordon and Johnson may be gone, but Hollis-Jefferson is here to stay

Arizona St. (Arizona Republic)
» ASU hockey tops Robert Morris to claim ACHA crown
» ASU baseball drops series against Tennessee
» Cancer fails to pin ASU's Eskam or derail his big plans for life
» Late errors doom ASU baseball in tough loss to Tennessee

California (East Bay Tribune)
» Local digest: Saint Mary's men's golf leads at WCC tournament
» Cal names Tennessee's Cuonzo Martin as new basketball coach
» New Cal coach Cuonzo Martin praised by mentor Gene Keady, others
» Stanford's Chiney Ogwumike is WNBA's top overall draft pick

Colorado (Denver Post)
» Colorado Classics: Darian Hagan, former CU Buffs quarterback
» CU Buffs backup QB Jordan Gehrke impresses during spring drills
» Fleet freshman receivers shine in CU Buffs' spring game
» Spring games are important, Colorado's Mike MacIntyre says

Oregon (The Oregonian)
» Canzano: Oregon Ducks coach Mark Helfrich says there is no user's manual to being a head coach
» Jabari Parker NBA announcement; Oregon football players eat, eat, eat; Ducks' 'billion-dollar question': The Oregonian sports top 5 (links)
» Oregon third baseman Mitchell Tolman discusses national honor and getting mad
» Oregon Ducks baseball not looking past Washington State in pivotal Pac-12 series

Oregon State (Corvallis Gazette-Times)
» OSU men's basketball: De Carolis statement on men's basketball
» Oregon State's tournament success caps a remarkably quick turnaround
» OSU gymnastics: Beavers headed to Penn State for NCAA regionals
» OSU wins seventh straight racquetball national title

Stanford (San Jose Mercury-News)
» Local digest: Saint Mary's men's golf leads at WCC tournament
» Stanford's Chiney Ogwumike is WNBA's top overall draft pick
» Stanford's defense shows its dominance in spring game
» Cal Bears sweep Stanford in 120th Big Meet

UCLA (Los Angeles Daily News)
» UCLA Football Notebook: Running back Malcolm Jones loses appeal for extra season
» College Football: Position coach Adrian Klemm says UCLA offensive line a work in progress
» COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Improving UCLA has questions to answer during preseason football camp
» COLLEGE FOOTBALL: UCLA's prized recruit Eddie Vanderdoes cleared to play by NCAA after leaving Notre Dame

USC (Los Angeles Daily News)
» USC Football Notebook: Marqise Lee's injury not too serious
» USC Football Notebook: QBs Max Wittek, Cody Kessler present dilemma for Trojans coach Lane Kiffin
» USC FOOTBALL NOTEBOOK: Former UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel thinks Trojans might not miss QB Matt Barkley
» USC FOOTBALL NOTEBOOK: Dion Bailey says it's 'now or never'

Washington (Seattle Times)
» UW spring depth chart: Offense
» Live chat today at 1:30 p.m. to preview the Huskies' spring game
» Washington's softball stars of today still learning from the program's previous hero
» UW's Damore'ea Stringfellow pleads guilty to assault of Seahawks fans; sentenced to five days on a work crew

Washington State (Spokane Spokesman-Review)
» Thursday morning Pac-12 links
» Five Questions with Xavier Cooper
» Live WSU Chat
» One change causes more in Pullman



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